In a rather amazing story that lit up Twitter around midnight. Republican congressman Michael Burgess (R-TX), who is an OB/GYN, told a US House committee on Monday that he thinks abortion should be banned after 15 weeks as that’s when male fetuses begin to masturbate.
The story was first reported here, and subsequently Raw Story found a link to the entire hearing posted on the House Rules Committee Web site. Here is the money quote from Burgess, followed by the video, that I excerpted as it was over an hour long:
This is a subject that I do know something about…. There is no question in my mind that a baby at 20-weeks after conception can feel pain. The fact of the matter is, I argue with the chairman because I thought the date was far too late. We should be setting this at 15-weeks, 16-weeks… You watch a sonogram of a 15-week baby, and they have movements that are purposeful. They stroke their face. If they’re a male baby, they may have their hand between their legs. They feel pleasure, why is it so hard to think that they could feel pain?
Yep, it’s always about the boy’s pleasure, not the girl’s.
Of course, it’s ironic that Republicans are now anti-abortion because they’re pro-masturbation. You’ll recall that no less a Republican than Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia once lamented that the court’s ruling in favor of gay rights, and against sodomy laws, would limit the states’ ability to regulate masturbation.
Here’s Scalia’s dissent in Lawrence v Texas:
State laws against bigamy, same-sex marriage, adult incest, prostitution, masturbation, adultery, fornication, bestiality, and obscenity are likewise sustainable only in light of Bowers’ validation of laws based on moral choices. Every single one of these laws is called into question by today’s decision; the Court makes no effort to cabin the scope of its decision to exclude them from its holding.
The Republican party’s new-found embrace of masturbation – underage masturbation at that – is perhaps evidence that the GOP’s new “rebranding” might finally paying off.
Well, for fetuses at least.
It’s a start.
PS And the jokes have already begun: